Dieting isn’t fun, and a lot of people aren’t able to stick with them. This happens because we make such radical changes to our eating habits. With all the dieting fads we are exposed to it’s no wonder.
Some diets only allow us to eat fruit, or protein and everything else has to go, and that kind of a diet is hard to stick with.
It’s better to make gradual changes to our eating habits, that way we don’t feel deprived and start craving foods we’re told we can’t have. When that happens it’s more likely we’ll abandon ship on the diet.
When we make changes to our diet gradually it gives us more time to adjust. For example, if you like cream and sugar in your coffee and use two scoops of cream and two scoops of sugar you can change how you drink it over a period of time.
Day one: add a scoop and a half of cream to your coffee, do the same with the sugar.
Day two: add one scoop of each to your coffee.
Day three: add half a scoop of each to your coffee.
As you make these changes consider making your coffee a little weaker as you adjust to the new flavor. By day four you might be able to drink your coffee black, but if not that’s okay. You can repeat the process if needed.
In time you might be able to do without the cream and sugar and save it as a treat. If nothing else maybe you’ll get used to less sweetener in your coffee.
By itself, a cup of coffee only has about two calories, which I think is pretty great. If you like this technique you can apply it to other things in your diet.
I wanted to share this idea about the coffee with you because someone who told me about how it worked for them. In their case, they only used sugar in their coffee and it was pretty easy for them to get used to.
I’ve changed my coffee habits too. Normally, I like it with a level scoop or two of cream, and sugar with a splash of flavored liquid cream. It’s been my favorite way to drink it for a long time.
When I decided to reduce the calories in my coffee I starting using a half scoop of the cream and sugar along with a splash of the flavored stuff for a few days. Then I started using just a splash of liquid creamer.
The next thing I knew I was consistently making my coffee weaker. Now I drink it black about 80% of the time. On the weekends I treat myself to some flavored coffee, and I’m still using less flavor than I did before.
If its a weekday and I really want to flavor my coffee I let myself have a cup with a splash of flavor. I’m not hard on myself when I make that choice, because it doesn’t do any good to make myself feel guilty.
Reduction not Guilt
When you make the choice to change your eating habits baby steps is the way to go. It gives you time to adjust and you’re not telling yourself you absolutely can’t have something, because that’s one of the things that make dieting so difficult.
When you hear, you can’t do this or you can’t have that, what happens?
You crave it even more. Then you go for it and probably give up on the diet because the expectation placed on you is too high.
Next time you feel the need for a bag of chips allow yourself one of those mini bags you can buy at Dari Mart or something. That way you’re not depriving yourself completely.
I’m not trying to encourage you to indulge anytime you want, I’m just saying one way to handle a craving is to do so in moderation that way you can avoid having to tell yourself I can’t have that.
Most of the time our cravings only last a little while. If you can find something to do for about thirty minutes more than likely the craving will pass. You can go for a walk, do some reading, tidy the house up a bit, or write down your thoughts, goals, and dreams in your journal.
The point is if you can busy yourself with something you’ll get distracted and forget you even wanted that cookie.
Don’t keep unhealthy food in the house
If you crave food and drink that you know isn’t good for you, don’t keep it around, if it’s not there you can’t consume it. Chances are if you want a soda, candy or something but it’s not in the house you won’t feel like going to the store just to get it.
Instead, try keeping dried fruit around to satisfy your sweet tooth. If you want something salty try snacking on nuts or sunflower seeds (if you’re not allergic.) Try frozen yogurt rather than ice cream for a cold treat. Of course, you want to be reasonable when you snack.
Here’s a tip, make sure your portion is about the size of your fist, that way you don’t overeat.
For more tips on how to avoid the pitfalls of dieting click here to download your FREE Common Sense Guide to Weight Loss